93. Spider-Man vs. the Hobgoblin (Amazing Spider-Man #249-251)
This is one of the oddest battles on this list, if only because it is one of, if not the only, battle that was begun by one creative team and ended by another.
The story begins in Amazing Spider-Man #249, by Roger Stern and John Romita Jr., where the Hobgoblin, the mysterious villain first seen in #238, tries out his most audacious plan yet - to blackmail at a club a large deal of city leaders with information the Hobgoblin obtained from the files of Norman Osborn (who is where the Hobgoblin got his gear from).
Spider-Man attacks the Hobgoblin at the club, but the Hobgoblin has developed a gas that can eliminate Spider-Man’s Spider Sense (the Green Goblin used it in the past), leading to the Hobgoblin defeating Spider-Man. Spider-Man is saved, however, by the Kingpin, who was one of the club members being blackmailed.
The next issue, Spider-Man strives to find the Hobgoblin without the use of his Spider Sense, and ultimately figures out a way, leading to the discovery of one of the Hobgoblin’s lairs and for the first time, it is Spidey that has the element of surprise! Spider-Man attacks, and in the melee, the lair explodes.
This leads into Amazing Spider-Man #251, which is the first issue by incoming creative team Tom DeFalco and Ron Frenz.
Their battle continues throughout the issue (the explosion luckily destroyed all of Hobgoblin’s blackmail materials) and throughout the city, even! THe Hobgoblin’s gas wears off, and with his Spider-Sense return, Spider-Man re-gains the advantage, but ultimately, another explosion leaves Spidey stuck with nothing to show for his battle of the Hobgoblin, except, of course, the destruction of the blackmail materials.
DeFalco and Frenz begin strong in their follow-up to one of the better Spider-Man runs ever.